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15 Photography Competitions to Enter in 2021

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by Gayle Beveridge (subscribe)
Gayle Beveridge is a past winner of the Boroondara Literary Awards and her work has appeared in Award Winning Australian Writing. Gayle is passionate about family, writing, photography, and with Victoria’s beautiful Bass Coast which she now calls home.
Event: -
Get Those Photos Off Your Hard Drive and Show Them Off

You take loads and loads of photos, right. Come on now, admit to it. But what do you do with them; leave them to languish on your hard drive, post them to social media where each new post pushes them further away, print them in a photo book that ends up in the bottom drawer? No, no, no, your photos deserve so much better than that, they are, after all, your photos. You chose to take them, they meant something to you and they will mean something to others too.

So why not enter them in a competition? Don't be shy, give it a go. If you are a bit apprehensive and just want to dip your toe in the water, there are a couple that is free to enter; make them your first endeavours. Here's a list to get you started; these are just a small selection of the competitions offered each year.

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Image in the public domain via Pixabay

Monthly Competitions

1. Monthly at end of the month: Life Framer Competitions. This is a monthly competition with a different theme each month. The remaining themes for 2021 are July: World Travellers, August: Open Call, September: Street Life, October: The Face of the Earth, and November: Humans of the World. Inspirational photos are provided on the website and are worth having a look at. There are lucrative cash prizes and winners' photos are displayed in a gallery. Entry fees start at USD $20 for non-members. Visit the website for full details: https://www.life-framer.com/competitions/

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Image in the public domain via Pixabay

2. Monthly at end of month deadline except for December which is the 15th: Australian Photography Magazine Monthly Competition. This competition is free to enter and has a different theme each month. Themes are announced in the first week of the month and the competition closes on the last day of the month. Photos are uploaded to the website. The monthly prize varies; for example, the prize for July 2021 is two bottles of Glen Grant Whisky worth a total of $295. The people's choice prize is a year's subscription to the magazine. Visit the website for full details and to view the images entered. https://www.australianphotography.com/yafphotocompetition/free-monthly-competition

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Image in the public domain via Pixabay

3. Monthly at end of the month: CameraPro Monthly Photo Competition. This competition runs monthly to a specific theme and is open to Australian residents and is free to enter. For example, the theme for July 2021 is Night Photography. Prizes are CameraPro vouchers. You will find full details and a selection of images of previous winners on their website. https://www.camerapro.com.au/photocompetition

July and August Deadlines

4. 31st July 2021 deadline: Elders 2022 Calendar Photo Competition. This year Elders are looking for photographs about your contribution to Australian agriculture, as seen through the lens. Winners have their photographs included in the 2022 calendar with a $500 gift voucher for the cover photos and a $100 gift voucher to each of the other twelve winners. The competition is open to Australian residents. https://eldersrural.com.au/about-us/calendar-competition/

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Image in the public domain via Pixabay

5. 1st August 2021 deadline: #Tedswinter21 Photo Competition! Run by Ted's cameras, this competition is seeking photos on the theme of winter. The prize is a Canon EOS M50 Kit, valued at $850 and entry is free. Submit your entries via their website: https://www.teds.com.au/photo-competition

6. 2nd August 2021 deadline: Birdlife Australia Photography Awards. This competition accepts entries in nine categories – bird portrait, birds in flight, bird behaviour, backyard birds, human impact, birds in the landscape, special theme: plovers, dotterels and lapwings, youth and portfolio. There is a $1,000 cash prize for each category and a $5,000 cash prize for the portfolio winner. Entry fees begin at $10 for three photos. For full details and answers to the FAQ's go to their website: https://www.birdlifephotoaward.org.au/

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Image in the public domain via Pixabay

7. 8th August 2021 deadline: Stanthorpe Photography Awards 2021. This competition for Australians only is looking for photography that goes beyond simply capturing what is there. They are looking for contemporary art photography. There is a $5,000 cash prize for first place and $750 for each of two commended entries. Entry fees are $20 per image. Visit their website for full details and to enter. https://www.srag.org.au/photoawards

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Image in the public domain via Pixabay

8. 24th August 2021 deadline: AAP Magazine Travel Photography Contest. This competition is calling for entries of a cohesive body of work or portfolio of your travel photos and it can include mobile phone photos. The final deadline for entries is the 24th August 2021 with prizes of USD $500 for the first, USD $300 for the second and USD $200 for the third, with winning entries being published. Entry fees are USD $30 for three photos plus USD $5 for each additional photo. Check out their website for further details. https://www.all-about-photo.com/all-about-photo-contest.php?cid=35

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Image in the public domain via Pixabay

9. 31st August 2021 deadline: Crikey! Magazine Photography 2021 Competition. This is an annual competition run by Australia Zoo's Crikey! Magazine and has both open and a range of junior categories. For the magazine cover and kids categories, photographs must be in portrait format and feature an animal, photographed anywhere in the world. For the natural world category images "can showcase the natural world, depict the complex relationship between humans and nature, or illustrate threatened wildlife." Prizes vary across categories and are detailed on their website where full entry details can be found. https://www.australiazoo.com.au/photography-competition/

September and October Deadlines

10. 15th September 2021 deadline: WMO 2022 Calendar Competition. This annual competition is run by the World Meteorological Organisation for "high-quality and artistic photographs of the amazing power and beauty of our weather and our natural surrounds." There is no cash prize but winning photographs will appear in the 2022 calendar. Details of how to enter are available on their website. https://public.wmo.int/en/wmo-2022-calendar-competition

Photography competitions,Photo competitions 2021,Photography awards,Photo awards,Photography prizes,Photo prizes,Photography contest,Photo contest,Win prizes for photos,Photography Show,Australian photography awards,photographer of the year, nature photography,birdlife photography,free photo competitons,monochrome awards,monthly photography competitions
Image in the public domain via Pixabay

11. A likely September deadline: The Nature Conservatory Australia 2021 Photo Contest. The nature photography awards will open for entries on the 1st August 2021. The website features tips from a number of accomplished photographers and allows you to sign up for the photo contest alert. https://www.natureaustralia.org.au/get-involved/how-to-help/photo-contest/

Photography competitions,Photo competitions 2021,Photography awards,Photo awards,Photography prizes,Photo prizes,Photography contest,Photo contest,Win prizes for photos,Photography Show,Australian photography awards,photographer of the year, nature photography,birdlife photography,free photo competitons,monochrome awards,monthly photography competitions
Image in the public domain via Pixabay

12. 30th September 2021 deadline: The International Landscape Photographer of the year. This competition opens for entries on the 1st of August 2021. There is a prize for the photograph of the year and also for the photographer of the year for a four-image portfolio. At the time of writing the website was yet to be updated for the 2021 competition and I suggest you check-in there in August. https://www.internationallandscapephotographer.com/

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Image in the public domain via Pixabay

13. 18th October 2021 deadline: Australian Photography Awards. Entries to the Australian Photography Awards open on the 1st August 2021. This annual competition offers a diverse range of photographic categories: portrait, landscape, documentary, wildlife/animal, travel/street, open/illustrative, student and junior. Even if you don't intend to enter it's worth having a look at the wonderful photography on the site. Entry fees commence at $30 for a single image. Prizes are lucrative and differ for each category. Details can be found on their website at https://www.australianphotographyawards.com.au/

November and Beyond Deadlines

14. 14th November 2021 deadline: Monochrome Awards 2021. This is an annual competition for both professional and amateur photographers. They are looking for monochrome (black and white) images in the categories Architecture, Abstract, Conceptual, Beauty/ Fashion, Fine Art, Landscapes, Nude, Nature, People, Photomanipulation, Photojournalism, Portrait, and Wildlife. Prizes are USD $2,000 for Monochrome Photographer of the Year and USD $1,000 for Monochrome Discovery of the Year. Entry fees begin at USD $20 for amateurs. Go to their website for further details: https://monoawards.com/

Photography competitions,Photo competitions 2021,Photography awards,Photo awards,Photography prizes,Photo prizes,Photography contest,Photo contest,Win prizes for photos,Photography Show,Australian photography awards,photographer of the year, nature photography,birdlife photography,free photo competitons,monochrome awards,monthly photography competitions
Image in the public domain via Pixabay

15.January 6th 2022 deadline: Sony World Photography Awards 2022. Entries to this competition are free and open to anyone submitting single images taken in 2021. The overall prize is USD $5,000 and there are non-cash prizes as well. The deadline for entries is January 6th 2022. Categories include architecture, creative, motion, landscape, lifestyle, natural and wildlife, object, portraiture, street photography and travel. Full and comprehensive details can be found on their website. https://www.worldphoto.org/sony-world-photography-awards/open
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Why? Because your photos should be seen and admired.
When: July 2021 to January 2022 – Check individual deadlines
Where: On-line entries
Cost: Some are free. Check websites for specific entry fees.
Your Comment
What a great article - I will enter some! Thanks Gayle :)
by Sue W (score: 3|1617) 127 days ago
Thanks for sharing this info, Gayle! I hadn't heard of a couple of those
by Paula McManus (score: 3|3763) 127 days ago
I've never really thought of myself as a photographer who could enter competitions but I might have a go at the Australian Photography Monthly one.
by betty (score: 2|660) 128 days ago
Very helpful information in this article. Thanks Gayle!
by Fiona Anderson (score: 3|1026) 126 days ago
Great list of opportunities to compare my skills against some of the best.
by Roger (score: 2|781) 128 days ago
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